Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander arts
Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander arts are a rich contribution to the world's culture and to Australia's diverse contemporary culture and national identity. Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander arts include classical, traditional and contemporary practice, including all new forms of cultural expression.
Specific artistic awareness or a deep appreciation of the meaning of an artistic experience through intellectual, emotional and sensual response to a work of art.
In dance, standards of appropriateness and competency relevant to the genre, style, time and place.
In drama, involves subjective responses to non-verbal, affective and verbal devices which can be representative of genre, style, time and place.
In media arts, involves engagement with and increasing understanding of how images, sounds and texts can be used to provoke responses.
In music, involves the subjective responses by which music is perceived and judged, which can be relevant to genre, style, time and place.
In visual arts, the philosophical theory or set of principles governing the idea of beauty at a given time and place.
Specific shape or quality an artistic expression takes, such as dance, drama, media arts, music and visual artworks.
Abilities required to conceive, design and produce works of art through the manipulation and control of tools, materials and media.
In dance, the manner in which movement of the body is clearly coordinated and differentiated. For example, lifting the arm with the elbow initiating the movement.
In drama, voice: to form clear, distinct and accurate sounds for dramatic purpose; movement: to isolate and move specific parts of the body for dramatic purpose.
In music, the way a note is sung or played, such as short and detached (staccato), smooth (legato) or accented, which contributes to the overall style and interpretation.
Generic term for a performance or artwork in each of the five arts disciplines of dance, drama, media arts, music and visual arts. When referred to generically this curriculum uses the word ‘artwork’. Within each arts discipline, the discipline specific terms are used. Artworks and performances are also frequently described with reference to forms and styles.
The classification of the area of art in which an artist is working; for example, ceramics, painting, sculpture, photography.
An object made of pieces fitted together; a form of sculpture comprised of "found" objects.
A way of organising the parts of a design so that one side differs from the other without destroying the overall balance and harmony: also called informal balance.
The established mood or feeling conveyed in an artwork or performance.
Individuals or groups of people who experience the arts in a range of settings and contexts such as, formal, informal, virtual or interactive; through intellectual, emotional and social engagement. The artist is audience to their own artwork.
Particular listening skills students develop to identify and discriminate between sounds in music. Also referred to as ear training which involves focused listening activities through with students identify sounds such as rhythm, pitch and timbre.
In visual arts:
- a principle of art that refers to the way the art elements are arranged to create a feeling of stability in the work; that is, symmetrical, formal, asymmetrical, informal or radial.
- an even distribution of weight enabling someone to remain upright and steady.
Items put on to decorate and embellish oneself.
Focuses on the individual’s own body shapes, body bases, body parts, locomotor and non-locomotor movements.
In dance, body parts that support the rest of the body. For example, when standing, the feet are the body base; when kneeling, the knees are the body base.
In dance and drama, non-verbal communications through movement, gesture, facial expression, posture and proxemics; non-verbal communication.
body of work
A body of work represents a purposeful selection of an artists’ works; the body of work is usually linked by a common subject matter, style, concept, technique, etc.
In dance, isolated parts or sections of the body; for example, arms, legs, head, torso, feet or hands.
In dance, body areas of right side, left side, front, back, upper half and lower half.
The process of creating functional and non-functional art forms out of clay.
Identification and portrayal of a persons’ values, attitudes, intentions and actions in imagined relationships, situations and ideas of dramatic action.
The tools a choreographer selects and uses to communicate ideas, including abstraction, sequence, repetition, transition, contrast, variation and canon.
The arrangement of movement within the structure of a dance.
In media arts, codes can be further broken down into technical codes, such as camera angles, brush strokes, body movement and symbolic codes, such as the language, dress, actions of characters, visual symbols.
In visual arts, accepted ways of arranging materials into familiar forms, such as print, painting, moving image or sculpture.
Unity of concept or intention, usually a logical or natural connection is apparent.
To work with another person or group to achieve or do something.
Artwork made by attaching pieces of paper or other materials to a flat surface.
An element of art with properties of hue - the colour name, that is, red, blue, etc; intensity - the purity and strength of the colour, that is, bright red, dull red, etc; and value - the lightness or darkness of a colour.
Show how things are similar or different.
Complementary colours are pairs of colours that contrast with each other more than any other colour and when placed side-by-side make each other look brighter.
The placement or arrangement of elements or parts in artworks.
Contemporary art is defined as art that is current, offering a fresh perspective and point of view and often employing new techniques and new media. Current art means works by both emerging and established artists.
The arrangement of opposite elements, for example, light versus dark colours, rough versus smooth textures, large versus small shapes, in an artwork to create visual interest.
The power to direct what the body is doing.
Traditional or culturally accepted ways of doing things based on audience expectations. Each art form has hundreds of conventions built up over time and widely accepted by audiences. They can be referred to as the ‘technical rules’.
An intellectual and physical activity where artists explore the materials and processes to produce unique objects for the purposes of experimentation with form or function, exhibition, production and personal or community need. Indigenous cultures draw no distinction between art and craft and, similarly, contemporary culture values the interplay between the art or craft, design or craft, the art and designer or the design or maker. The crafted and handmade sit alongside the manufactured design object as part of historical, national and cultural identities.
The social practices of a particular people or group including shared beliefs, values, knowledge, customs and lifestyle.
Show by example.
Provide characteristics and features.
Plan or blueprint for a visual work of art as well as the outcome or product of applying; may also refer to design in terms of technology and functional art.
Include line, colour, shape, texture, space and form found in artworks and performances.
Accepted conventions associated with organising design elements and can include unity, balance, hierarchy, scale, proportion, emphasis, similarity and contrast.
Computer generated art forms including digital imaging, painting and drawing with a graphics tablet, animation, 3D printing, pixel art, factual art and algorithm and net art.
Technology driven by computer access with emphasis on web based and print output design.
Measurement in one direction. A two-dimensional (2-D) work of art has the two dimensions of length and width; a three-dimensional (3-D) work of art has the three dimensions of length, width and depth.
Identify issues and provide points for and against.
To create a record of (something) through writing or record keeping.
Art form where the process and product need to be recorded and described to share out of time and place; for example, performance art.
Drama is a mode of fictional representation through dialogue and performance experienced in all cultures and form the very beginning of human interactions.
The driving force and forward motion of drama to create dramatic meaning, tension, belief and audience engagement. The movement of the drama from the introduction, exposition of ideas and conflict to a resolution.
A signified, intended purpose or effect interpreted from the communication of expressive dramatic action.
When learners use their imaginations or pretend. They may use objects, actions and storylines to symbolise things that concern them.
A picture or diagram made with a pencil, pen or crayon rather than paint.
In dance: how dance is performed including weight, force, energy and movement qualities.
In music: how music is performed including volume, energy and intensity.
Environmental art, or eco-art, is an umbrella term for Romanticism, eco-realism and Gaia art: three movements which seek to promote humanity's interconnectedness to the natural world and criticise the destruction of our environment.
Make a judgement based on criteria; determine the value of.
Expressionism refers to art in which the image of reality is distorted to make it expressive of the artist’s feelings or ideas.
In dance, the use of facial expression to communicate in performance.
In drama, the use of facial and vocal expression to communicate in performance.
In music, the use of elements such as dynamics combined with technical skills to enhance performance
The action or process of manufacturing or inventing something.
A type of art using fibres, yarn and fabric as the medium to create tactile forms and images through surface design, weaving and construction techniques.
To concentrate the attention on a spatial direction or a point in space to intensify attention or increase the projection of intent. For example:
- In dance, to concentrate on the dancer’s line of sight or dramatic action.
- In drama, to direct and intensify attention and frame moments of dramatic action or to identify the main idea of the drama.
- In visual arts, to draw the audience’s attention to a particular point in the artwork.
In each arts subject, form is the whole of an artwork created by the elements and the way they are structured:
- In Dance, form is the shape or structure of a dance according to a preconceived plan. For example, AB, ABA, rondo, narrative, chance.
- In drama, form is the way drama is structured. Drama forms are shaped by the application of the elements of drama within particular social, cultural and historical contexts.
- In music, form is the sections within a piece of music, for example, binary form (AB) contains section A, then section B; ternary form (ABA) contains section A, section B, then return to section A; rondo form (ABACA) contains section A, section B, section C, then return to section A.
- In visual arts, two-dimensional form (see 2D), three-dimensional form (see 3D) and four-dimensional form (see 4D).
Common or unusual objects that may be used to create a work of art; specifically refers to scrap, discarded materials that have been “found” and used in artworks.
Functional objects such as dishes and clothes that are of a high artistic quality and craftsmanship; art with a utilitarian purpose.
fundamental movement skills
Fundamental movement in dance include locomotor movements such as walking or running and non-locomotor movements such as bending and stretching. Fundamental movements can also incorporate spatial and dynamic changes such as jumping, spinning or exploding, reflect conventions and vocabulary of selected dance styles.
In visual Arts:
- gestural is a term used to describe the application of paint in free sweeping gestures with a brush.
In drama and dance:
- refers to motions of the body that can signify an action or idea for example the gesture of waving goodbye.
The art of visual communication that combines images, words and ideas to convey information to an audience, especially to produce a specific effect.
In art, harmony is the combination or adaptation of parts, elements or related things, to form a consistent and orderly whole.
hybrid art form
The combination of more than one art form within an artwork.
The combination of different things resulting in the development of a hybrid.
In this course the word has an open meaning and can be interpreted as understandings, thoughts, notions, opinions, views or beliefs.
In dance - movement that is created spontaneously, either free-form or highly structured.
In drama - a spontaneous enactment taking on roles and situations to create dramatic action and extend an idea.
In music - spontaneously extending and varying music ideas in response to initial material or responses invented by other performers in an ensemble.
19th-century art movement that rejected the historical themes and nostalgic images favoured by the academic and romantic painters of the day. The Impressionists looked to the life around them as the inspiration for their paintings of sunlit landscapes, middle-class people at leisure and mothers with children. The many inventions of the Industrial Revolution included portable oil paints and easels that allowed the artist to break free of the studio and paint en plein air, out of doors, or from sketches done directly on the spot. This approach encouraged the use of spontaneous, unblended brushstrokes of vibrant colour by these artists.
Spontaneous, creative activity applying the elements of an art form:
In dance, movement that is created spontaneously, either free-form or highly structured.
In drama, a spontaneous enactment taking on roles and situations to create dramatic action and extend an idea: usually short and are structured into a complete little play.
In music, spontaneously extending and varying music ideas in response to initial material or responses invented by other performers in an ensemble.
In media arts, organisations that enable and constrain media production and use.
The meaning an artist wishes to convey.
Draw meaning from.
key concepts of media arts
Media languages, media technologies, media institutions, media audiences and media representation.
A furnace in which clay is fired.
Involves how well an individual perceives and controls their body in terms of physical activity and fine motor skills within the space of a dance.
The subject matter category in which the main theme of the work is natural scenery such as mountains, valleys, trees, rivers and lakes. Traditionally, the space depicted in a landscape is divided into three parts. The foreground is the part closest to you, the viewer. Objects in the foreground are usually larger and more detailed than other objects; they overlap other objects. Objects in the middle ground appear to be behind objects in the foreground. The background is the part of the painting farthest from the viewer. Objects in the background are usually smaller and less distinct than other objects in the work.
In drama, ideas and dramatic meaning: the choice of linguistic expression and ideas in drama used to create dramatic action.
The act of drawing the human figure from a living model.
In media arts, light, shade and colour for effect.
Travelling movements, movement from one space to another such as walking, running, hopping, skipping, leaping or crawling.
An enlarged representation, image or model.
- The substances used in the creation of a work of art.
- Physical resources or equipment including technologies and information used to make artworks and performances. For example, paint, digital camera, pencil, drum and clarinet.
The individuals or groups for whom media artworks are made and who respond as consumers, citizens and creative individuals. Audiences engage and interact based on expectation and experience.
The individuals, communities and organisations that influence, enable and constrain media production and use. Institutions are framed by the social, historical and cultural context.
Refers to the system of signs or symbols that media artworks use to communicate ideas and stories. The language system is a combination of symbolic codes and the technical form of media arts technologies. The language systems of media artworks use and control technical and symbolic elements to communicate meaning.
The act of representing people, places and times, shared social values and beliefs through images, sounds and text or a combination of these. The representations are a constructed reality.
The material used in making an artwork.
A transformation in physical form or character.
A thing regarded as representative or symbolic of something else; the substitution of one idea or object with another.
A reduction in scale or proportion relative to other design elements.
Any artwork that uses more than one medium.
Refers to the overall art movement from the late 1800s to the early 1970s in which artists were primarily interested in how they presented their artistic ideas and issues rather than reproducing the world as it appears visually. This focus on the cultivation of individual style and artistic process led many modern artists toward an abstracted use of the elements of art. The new creative possibilities encouraged a great diversity of activity and artists experimented with new visual formats and ideas. Reflecting this artistic diversity, Modernism can be considered as a larger heading under which several different art movements such as Impressionism, Fauvism, Expressionism, Cubism, Dada, Surrealism and Abstract Expressionism all flourished in succession.
mood and atmosphere
In drama, the feeling or tone of both the physical space and the dramatic action created by or emerging from the performance.
A decorative design or pattern; a distinctive feature or dominant idea in an artwork.
In dance: the way the body moves in and through space.
In drama: using facial expression, posture and action expressively in space and time to create roles, situations, relationships, atmosphere and symbols.
In media arts: the way the eye discovers images or text; the suggestion of movement through sound.
The accumulation of movement, steps, gestures that make up a repertoire for physical expression of feelings or ideas.
A tendency or style in art with a specific common philosophy or goal, followed by a group of artists during a restricted period, usually a few months, years or decades or, at least, with the heyday of the movement defined within several years.
Artworks that incorporate a broad range of media including graphics, text, digital media, audio or video.
A text may be defined as multimodal when it combines two or more semiotic systems: linguistic, visual, audio, gestural or spatial.
Surface treatment or decoration that is applied directly to a wall. A painted fresco is one form of a mural.
“New” classicism movement of the late 18th and early 19th Centuries. Neoclassicism was inspired by the classical style of ancient Greece and Rome and the classical ideals of harmony, idealised realism, clarity and reason are all generally found in examples of neoclassical architecture, painting and sculpture.
Movement of the body occurring above a stationary base, on the spot movement. Also called axial movement. For example, bending, stretching, twisting, shaking, bouncing, sinking, pushing, pulling, swinging and swaying.
Written symbols that represent and communicate sound. Notation can be invented, recognisable to a traditional style or culture or digitally created.
Sketch in general terms; indicate the main features of.
Paintings are made of organic and inorganic materials which are put together by an artist to create a specific image. They form a simple construction consisting of one or more paint layers and a support for those layers.
In dance, patterns created in the air or on the floor by the body or body parts as a dancer moves in and through space.
Enact or stage a presentation for an audience.
A type of dramatic expression communicated for a particular effect with distinguishing features and appearance.
The personal flavour imparted by the writer when he or she is engaged with a topic. The authors attitude comes through in the writing.
System of representing three-dimensional objects on a two-dimensional surface, giving the illusion of depth in space. Linear perspective deals with drawing and atmosphericperspective attempts to use colour and value changes to get the effect of distance.
The art or practice of taking and processing photographs.
The illusionary space in a painting or other two-dimensional art that appears to recede backward into depth from the picture plane.
Creating a play through improvisation or devising.
The relative highness or lowness of sound.
Pop art was a style of modern art in the 1960s that used the imagery of mass-media, mass-production and mass-culture.
Subject matter category in which the main purpose of the artwork is to communicate a likeness of an individual or group of individuals.
A term used to describe the period of art which followed the modern period, i.e., from the 1950s until recently. The term implies a shift away from the formal rigors of the modernists, toward the less formally and emotionally stringent Pop artists and other art movements which followed.
The application of arts skills and knowledge to create, represent, communicate and respond in a specific art form.
Regularly revising, developing and consolidating skills, techniques and repertoire as a class or an individual.
To show for others to scrutinise or consider.
Primary sources provide first-hand testimony or direct evidence concerning a topic under investigation. They are created by witnesses or recorders who experienced the events or conditions being documented. Often these sources are created at the time when the events or conditions are occurring, but primary sources can also include autobiographies, memoirs and oral histories recorded later.
The category of fine art printing processes, including etching, lithography, woodcut and silkscreen, in which multiple images are made from the same metal plate, heavy stone, wood or linoleum block or silkscreen with black-and-white or colour printing inks.
A method of teaching and learning drama where both the students and teacher are working in and out of role.
In Dance, the communication of meaning through extension and focus of the body.
In Drama, the loudness of the voice of an actor and how it is carried to the audience.
The relationship in size of one component of a work of art to another.
19th-century art movement in which artists focused attention on ordinary people, such as peasants and laborers, who had not been pictured in art up to that time. Realists depicted real scenes from contemporary life, from city street scenes to country funerals. They tried to show the beauty in the commonplace, refusing to idealise or gloss over reality as Neoclassical and Romantic artists had.
Artwork that attempts a photographic likeness of the subject matter; sometimes refers to the choice of subject that is commonplace as opposed to courtly and idealised.
Recall particular features of information from knowledge.
In dance, relationships refer to associations or connections occurring when the body dances.
Relationships might occur between body parts: for example, right arm to left arm or hand to face; the body and the floor: for example, close to or away from; the body and objects: for example, a chair, fan, stick or scarf; the body and space: for example, an expansive or limited relationship; and the body and others: for example, dance to one or more dancers.
In drama, the connections and interactions between people that affect the dramatic action.
Literally means “rebirth.” The Renaissance period in Europe lasted from the 14th Century through the 16th Century and was distinguished by a renewed interest in classical art, architecture, literature and philosophy.
Use words, images, symbols or signs to convey meaning.
The expression or designation of a character, place, idea, image or information by some other term, character, symbol, diagram, image, sound or combination of visual and aural expression, based on shared social values and beliefs:
In media arts, one of the five key concepts.
A concept in visual arts.
Completed with a level of refinement and clarity of purpose and vision.
In dance, a combination of long and short movement.
In media arts, a technique or effect achieved in editing.
In music, combinations of long and short sounds that convey a sense of movement, subdivision of sound within a beat.
role and character
In drama, the identification and portrayal of a person’s values, attitudes, intentions and actions as imagined relationships, situations and ideas in dramatic action; role focus on type and stereotype; characters are detailed and specific.
To pretend to be someone else.
Late 18th and early 19th Century movement that emphasised the values of passionate emotion and artistic freedom. Romanticism was a philosophical attitude that emphasised emotion, imagination, mystery and the pursuit of one’s unique destiny. The Romantics had a deep fascination with historical literature and artistic styles that stood in contrast to a world that was becoming increasingly industrialised and developed.
safe dance practices
Can be defined as the practice of selecting and executing safe movement. The focus is on providing dance activities and exercises which allow students to participate without risk of injury. All dance movement should be performed relevant to an individual’s body type and capabilities.
The dramatic action that occurs in a particular time and place; a section of a play.
A collection of notated representations of sound used to communicate musical information. Scores can use graphic, traditional, invented or stylistically specific symbols.
Object carved or modelled in wood, stone, etc or cast in metal for an aesthetic, non-functional purpose, or the process of producing it, hence sculptor. "Sculptural" is used to describe art, including painting and drawing, that has pronounced three-dimensional qualities.
The linking together of series of ideas, much like words are linked together to form sentences and paragraphs:
In dance, a choreographic device where movements are linked together to form a series of movements or phrases.
In media arts, a series of still and moving images with or without sound are intentionally put into an order.
In music, a melodic, rhythmic or harmonic pattern. It can also describe the process or product of arranging blocks of music using ‘sequencing’ software.
In drama, the setting and circumstances of the dramatic action: the who, what, where, when and what is at stake of the roles and characters.
In media arts, aural effects e.g. Loudness, softness, ambient noise or music.
In dance, where the body moves, including level, dimension, direction, shape, active space, positive space, negative space, planes, pathways, general space, personal space and performance space.
In drama, the space of the performance and audience, fictional space of the dramatic action and the emotional space between characters.
In media and visual arts, the distance and relationship between objects, sounds or text or the depiction of place.
The subject matter category in which the main purpose of the artwork is to show inanimate objects.
A thing or event that evokes a reaction and arouses activity or energy in someone or something; a spur or incentive.
In media arts, selecting and organising the elements of structure, intent, characters, settings and points of view within the conventions of a genre.
Artwork that is created in a public space, typically without official permission. The term gained popularity during the graffiti art boom of the early 1980s and continues to be applied to subsequent incarnations. Stencil graffiti, wheat pasted poster art or sticker art and street installation or sculpture are common forms of modern street art. Video projection, yarn bombing and Lock-on sculpture became popularised at the turn of the 21st Century.
The influencing context of an artwork, such as Impressionist in visual arts; ballet or hip hop in dance; Romanticism in music; or postmodern, twenty-first century or contemporary, among many others.
The act of stylising; using artistic forms and conventions to create a desired effect.
Express, concisely, the relevant details.
Collection of materials that show the development of and further inform the context of the work in question.
A thing that represents or stands for something else; a mark or character used as a conventional representation of an object, function or process.
A way of organising the parts of a design so that one side duplicates or mirrors the other.
The interaction of two or more agents or forces so that their combined effect is greater than the sum of their individual effects.
To combine to form a new, complex product.
Combination of proficiencies in control, accuracy, alignment, strength, balance and coordination in an art form that develop with practice:
In dance, proficiencies developed through the acquisition of appropriate strength, flexibility, coordination and endurance in the performance of body actions, locomotor and non-locomotor movements and developed with practice to perform in specific dance styles.
In music, proficiencies developed with practice in order to sing or play instruments.
In dance, the acquisition and execution of dance skills within a given dance style or genre.
In drama, techniques include ways of using voice and movement to create role and dramatic action: also techniques in lighting, sound, set building and painting, costume making and make-up.
In music, the capacity to control a voice or instrument in order to produce a desired sound.
In visual arts, the manner of making or skills used in making an artwork.
The term ‘technologies’ should be understood in its widest sense to encompass the application of devices, tools, machines, techniques and processes to the production of artistic works.
In drama, a sense of anticipation or conflict within characters or character relationships or problems, surprise and mystery in stories and ideas to propel dramatic action and create audience engagement.
The means for communication. Their forms and conventions have developed to help us communicate effectively with a variety of audiences for a range of purposes. Texts can be written, visual, spoken, multimodal, in print or digital forms.
In music, the layers of sound in a musical work and the relationship between them.
In visual art, an element of art that refers to the perceived surface quality or “feel” of an object – its roughness, smoothness, softness, etc. Artworks can deal with the actual physical texture of a surface or the illusion of texture, depending on the aim of the artist.
A subject or topic of discourse or of artistic representation.
In music, the particular tone, colour or quality that distinguishes a sound or combinations of sounds.
In dance, time refers to how long a dance takes, including metre, tempo, momentum, accent, duration, phrasing, rhythmic patterns, stillness and beat.
In drama, the fictional time in the narrative or setting; timing of one moment to the next contributing to the tension and rhythm of dramatic action.
In media arts, the order, duration and depiction of ideas and events.
Time-based art can span a wide range of material, from video and sound artworks and performances, film or slide based projections and includes software-based art and technology-based installations and projections. Time-based media or the ‘moving image’ is also referred to as the 4th dimension.
In drama, tone of voice.
In music, a musical or vocal sound with reference to its pitch, quality and strength.
In visual art, the lightness or darkness of a colour; value.
To change the nature, function or condition of; to alter or be altered radically in form, function.
The act of exchanging or substituting.
Refers to the visual quality of wholeness or oneness that is achieved through effective use of the elements of art and principles of design.
A collection of perspectives, lenses or frames through which artworks can be explored and interpreted.
The elements and principles of art, design or architectural works.
The context and purpose of art, design or architectural works.
Structural devices used in art, design or architectural works; the synergy created by fusing two or more ideas or images or manipulating one idea or image into another form or state.
In drama, using voice expressively to create roles, situations, relationships, atmosphere and symbols.
The making of individually designed pieces of hand-made clothing and accessories as artistic expressions.